A Vehicle

B saw his old truck today. In a blur past the bank. He didn't want to lose sight of her, the truck.

It's a she in my head, a maroon red 1995 Toyota Forerunner LTD, SHE.

A blur from the past, he felt a ping and a panic, described feeling like he'd seen a ghost.  He chased after and found her.  Resting in the parking lot at the burger place, waiting for her owner who isn't us to come back out.

Yup. The same truck. The odd little identifiers like that back bumper cord thing and the roof rack essentially the equivalents of tattoos or birthmarks that meant, ya, ya, I'm your old truck, I'm the one. The "Before Kids" Sports Utility Vehicle.

He took a picture of her sitting there. I imagine they had a conversation.

"Hey, hey, I'm didn't desert you! I had to!" "You see, the kids...we have kids now...and you kept needing work and it didn't make sense. No air bags..."

I remember the afternoon we picked up her up from the car lot together in Phoenix.  It was the good kind of a warm day for Arizona, a Saturday afternoon and we were giggly about the beige leather seats and the sun roof. And the stereo which made U2 and DMB and Sting sound really good when cranked loud, his right hand and my left always squeezed tight, as we put on the miles and headed out on different adventure each Saturday. A different destination every Sunday. And so many Happy Hours in between.

And so there it was, a 4W Drive time capsule of another place and another time and different lives in a parking lot at the burger place a mile-and-a-half away.

I wish I could track her back down. I wish I could pull a miracle and get the keys and bring her back to him and to us.  Really, I rarely drove her so she might be skeptical. But I get it. She wasn't just an automobile like the Blazer, the Tercel, the Saab, the Highlander, the Matrix or the eight passenger mini-van sitting in the garage. She wasn't just transporting us to the grocery store or work or T ball games. She literally took us to the tops of mountains, to the ocean, to the hub of a monsoon thunderstorm in the desert.  She will be forever be associated with the young us, the best of us, of him and me. US. Everyone has those times, those memories. Wouldn't it be nice to take them for a drive once a week?

Close your eyes, okay? (I'm pretending.)
Here, here, I got her back.
Happy Anniversary. Happy Father's Day. Let's go for a ride. Let's go catch a thunderstorm.